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PM’s Wife Calls For Action On Policy, Conservation

PM’s Wife Calls For Action On Policy, Conservation
Mary Bainimarama (standing fourth from left), with Akie Abe (wife of the Japanese Prime Minister, standing fifth from left) in Iwaki, Japan. Photo: DEPTFO News
May 21
12:49 2018

Mary Bainimarama, the wife of Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe, has used the Fukushima tsunami of 2011 to call for global action and policy on ocean conservation.

Mary Bainimarama speaking at the Ocean for the Future Symposium in Iwaki, Japan. Photo: DEPTFO News

Mary Bainimarama speaking at the Ocean for the Future Symposium in Iwaki, Japan. Photo: DEPTFO News

Speaking at the Ocean for the Fu­ture Symposium in Iwaki, Japan, Mrs Bainimarama said the tsuna­mi was an example “of the wrath of the ocean on coastal communi­ties, whether small islands or large nations”.

The wife of Japan’s Prime Min­ister, Akie Abe, accompanied Mrs Bainimarama at the symposium.

Mrs Bainimarama’s comments came as Japan’s leader, Shinzo Abe, was stressing the need for ridding the ocean of plastics at the 8th Pacific Islands Leaders’ Summit. (PALM8)

Mrs Bainimarama spoke about the need for establishing marine-protected areas.

“In 1997 the residents of Ucuniva­nua Village, on the eastern coast of Viti Levu, Fiji’s largest island, launched the first Local Managed Marine Area in Fiji,” Mrs Bainimarama said.

“They declared a no-harvest/no- fishing zone over a 24-hectare site of mudflats and seagrass in front of the village. Their aim was to let their traditional food sources (Kai­koso clams) recover and they suc­ceeded.

“The initial three-year ban led to an abundance of clams and made a direct contribution to the income of the people of the village.”

Goal 14 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals emphasises the need to save “life below water”.

According to the UN, in 2017 pro­tected areas covered 13.2 per cent of the marine environment.

It warns that more than 30 per cent of the world’s fish stocks are being overexploited, which is below the level at which they can produce sustainable yields.

Mrs Bainimarama said: “I hope to see more relevant action from our Pacific partnership with Japan – we can be world leaders in address­ing ocean change – together.

“Let us continue to bring our young people together on these is­sues. Let us work together with technology and security to ensure that we manage our shared fisher­ies in the ocean.”

Edited by Epineri Vula

Feedback: sheldon.chanel@fijisun.com.fj

 

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